With the Stanley Cup Finals dragging out with long two-day gaps between games and doing nothing except increase the non-Pittsburgh hockey world’s hatred for the Penguins and Sidney Crosby, I cannot help but think that a ton of stuff is percolating behind the scenes right now.
The unwritten rule in the past has been that the wheeling and dealing did not really start, publicly at least, until the playoffs were over. In most seasons, that worked fine. That schedule left a week or so before the regular NHL draft and there really was not much for deadlines except free agent qualifying offers and buyouts.
But the summer of 2017 is significantly different because of the expansion draft. The expansion draft sets a pretty hard deadline for a first round of deals related to it. Once the seal breaks on summer NHL dealing, I think a bunch of deals could pour out pretty quickly.
But until then, we are mostly left waiting, wondering and speculating. This week’s batch of external reading has a couple articles pointed in that direction and also a grab bag of other articles.
The expansion draft
Matt Larkin at The Hockey News suggests five players who are likely to be traded before the expansion draft.
Highlighting the challenges that a few teams will face figuring out who to protect, below are a handful of team profiles.
Satchel Price a SBNation details the Anaheim Ducks’ situation.
Kevin Wickersham from My NHL Trade Rumors breaks things down for the Minnesota Wild.
The regular 2017 NHL Draft
For those already looking forward to the regular 2017 NHL Draft, here are a couple articles to get started.
If you want to drill down, player by player, seven rounds deep, The Draft Analyst has and rankings for more than 200 players.
Craig Button at TSN.ca has his final draft rankings for the top 105 players.
At Bojangles Coliseum in Charlotte
Nicholas Niedzielski with the Charlotte Checkers website wrote a great article about Andrew Poturalski’s rookie season.
Nicholas Niedzielski also profiled Roland McKeown’s first season as a professional at the Charlotte Checkers website.
Back at PNC Arena
The Carolina Hurricanes announced the team’s preseason schedule.
This week, the Hurricanes also made separate announcements for the coaching staff and for the athletic training and hockey operations staff.
Jamie Kellner at Canes Country gave out end of year grades and awards based on tallying the Rank ’em polls after each game.
Matt at CBTS Blog shared some statistics and insight from the 2016-17 season.
Derek Roessler from Section 328 offered a Q&A with Scott Darling.